tamarind rice recipe, puliyodharai recipe
Print Recipe
4.64 from 11 votes

tamarind rice recipe

puliyodharai recipe - popular south indian recipe of sour and spiced rice. this dish is also called as puliyodharai.
Prep Time30 mins
Cook Time30 mins
Total Time1 hr
Course: main course
Cuisine: south indian, tamil nadu
Servings: 3 to 4
Author: Dassana Amit


for cooking rice

  • 1 cup heaped sona masuri rice OR 230 grams rice OR 4 cups cooked rice
  • ¼ to ⅓ teaspoon salt or add as required
  • 2 to 2.5 cups water for cooking rice
  • ¼ teaspoon turmeric powder (haldi)
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil (til ka tel)

spice powder for tamarind rice

  • 4 dry red chillies (sookhi lal mirch)
  • 2 teaspoons coriander seeds (sabut dhania)
  • 1 teaspoon chana dal (split and husked bengal gram)
  • 1 teaspoon urad dal (split and husked black gram)
  • ¼ teaspoon fenugreek seeds (methi seeds)
  • ¼ teaspoon whole black pepper (sabut kali mirch)
  • ½ teaspoon sesame seeds (safed til)
  • ¼ teaspoon asafoetida (hing)

tamarind pulp

  • 50 grams tamarind OR ⅓ cup tamarind - not tightly packed
  • 2 cups hot water for tamarind pulp

tempering and other ingredients for tamarind rice

  • 3 tablespoons sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon mustard seeds (rai)
  • 1 teaspoon urad dal (split and husked black gram)
  • 1 teaspoon chana dal (split and husked bengal gram)
  • ¼ cup peanuts (moongphali)
  • ¼ teaspoon turmeric powder (haldi)
  • a pinch of asafoedita (hing)
  • 1 sprig curry leaves OR 10 to 12 curry leaves (kadi patta)
  • 2 to 3 dry red chillies (sookhi lal mirch)
  • 2 teaspoons jaggery powder
  • salt as required


cooking rice

  • rinse 1 heaped cup sona masuri (230 grams) very well in water. then add the rice in a pressure cooker. also add 1/4 to 1/3 teaspoon salt or add as required.
  • add 2.5 cups water. you can add water depending on the quality of rice. since i have not soaked the rice, i have added 2.5 cups water and also this rice takes a long time to cook as its hand pounded sona masuri rice. for a regular variety, you can add 2 cups water.
  • pressure cook for 10 to 12 minutes or 3 to 4 whistles or till the rice is cooked well. do ensure that the rice does not get overcooked. for the hand pounded sona masuri rice, i pressure cooked for 14 minutes. when the pressure settles down on its own, remove the lid. fluff the rice.
  • remove the cooked rice in a large plate or tray or a large bowl and allow it cool.
  • when the rice becomes warm, add 1/4 teaspoon turmeric powder and 1 tablespoon sesame oil to it.
  • mix well and keep aside. mix gently so that the rice grains do not break. if there are lumps, then break the lumps.

preparing tamarind pulp

  • take 50 grams tamarind or 1/3 cup tamarind (not tightly packed) in a bowl.
  • add 2 cups hot water and soak the tamarind for 30 to 40 minutes.
  • then squeeze the soaked tamarind and extract the pulp. keep the bowl aside.

preparing puliyodharai masala or spice mix

  • heat a pan and then reduce the flame to a low.
  • add all the whole spices mentioned under the list title 'spice powder' except asafoetida.
  • stirring often roast them on a low flame or sim.
  • roast till the urad dal and chana dal become light golden or golden. the entire mixture will become aromatic.
  • once the lentils have browned well, then switch off the flame and add 1/4 teaspoon asafoetida/hing.
  • mix very well and let the roasted spices cool.
  • then in a dry grinder or a spice grinder, add all the spices. break the red chilies and then add.
  • grind to a fine powder. keep aside.

making pulikachal for tamarind rice

  • heat 3 tablespoon sesame oil in a pan.
  • add 1 teaspoon mustard seeds, 1 teaspoon urad dal
  • also add 1 teaspoon chana dal and 1/4 cup peanuts. if you want you can roast or fry the peanuts separately also and add in the rice towards the end.
  • saute on a low flame till the lentils turn golden. the peanuts will also get done by this time.
  • once the peanuts as well as the lentils turn golden, then add 2 to 3 dry red chillies, 1/4 teaspoon turmeric powder/haldi and 10 to 12 curry leaves. you can even switch off the flame if you want.
  • also add a pinch of asafoetida. mix well.
  • now strain the tamarind pulp and directly add in the tempering mixture. strain very well. you can even strain tamarind pulp before and keep aside. stir and mix everything.
  • add salt and 1 to 2 teaspoons of jaggery powder. you can add less or more of jaggery or skip it.
  • mix well and simmer the mixture on a low to medium flame.
  • bring this tamarind mixture to a boil and continue to cook.
  • cook till mixture has thickened a bit and you see oil floating on top.
  • then add the ground spice powder.
  • mix very well.
  • continue to simmer the pulikachal for some more minutes. do stir often.
  • cook till the mixture becomes thick like a thick tamarind sauce or chutney.
  • once this consistency is achieved, then switch off the flame. keep the pan down.

making tamarind rice

  • add the pulikachal to the rice.
  • gently mix very well.
  • after the mixing is done, you can serve right away or wait for some minutes for the flavors to infuse and then serve.
  • serve tamarind rice with fried vadagams or papads.